Vatican rejects Sister Lucy's final appeal against expulsion

Vatican rejects Sister Lucy's final appeal against expulsion
Sister Lucy (L), Bishop Franco Mulakkal (R)

Kottayam: The Vatican has rejected Sister Lucy Kalapurakkal's final appeal against her expulsion from Franciscan Clarist Congregation (FCC) for violating rules and participating in public protests demanding the arrest of rape accused bishop Franco Mulakkal in 2018.

Sister Lucy told Manorama News she was not expecting such a response after the latest development.

Even after her appeal was rejected last October, she was hopeful the Vatican's decision on her final appeal will be favourable. 

"The Vatican has not heard my side of the story. They have not made any calls, sent any emails to me. I will continue to fight," Sister Lucy had told Onmanorama last October when her appeal was turned down.

Sister Lucy made the appeals against her expulsion through the Apostolic Nuncio, the Vatican's representative in India.

The congregation, under the Roman Catholic Church, had removed Sister Lucy after she failed to give a satisfactory explanation for her lifestyle which was reportedly in violation of the FCC laws. 

In a letter seeking her expulsion, the congregation had termed as “grave violations” Sister Lucy possessing a driving license, buying a car, taking a loan for it, publishing a book and spending money without the permission and knowledge of her superiors.

The congregation had issued “proper canonical warnings” on numerous occasions to Sister Lucy, but she reportedly did not show the need for remorse. A letter was even issued to her elderly mother to take her back.

Sister Lucy had dismissed these charges against her, saying many of them were a deliberate attempt to paint her in a bad light.

Sister Lucy, who still lives in the congregation's convent at Mananthawady in Kerala's Wayanad district, said she will remain in the congregation and will continue to fight.

"I have nowhere to go. I have devoted my entire life to the congregation, where I joined at the age of 17. I am old now. So I have no option but to fight to get a favourable order," she said.

Sister Lucy had earlier told Onmanorama that if the Vatican's response was adverse, she will ask the diocese to give her a secure house in Wayanad.

"I don't want to quit the convent in tears. I want the nuns who oppose me – including the superiors – to accompany me to the new house. I want to part ways with FCC in such a friendly manner. Most of all, I wish to serve the people of Wayanad till my last breath."

Last week, another Kerala nun had levelled grave allegations of sexual abuse against former Bishop of Jalandhar, Franco Mulakkal. In her statement to the police, she has said the bishop used to make video calls on her mobile and make lewd comments.

However, the police have not registered a case over this allegation, as there is no complaint from the nun. 

Bishop Franco was arrested in 2018 following allegations by a nun that he had repeatedly raped her at the Kuravilangad convent in Kerala's Kottayam district between 2014 and 2016. 

The bishop, who was the head of Jalandhar diocese then, had denied all the charges. 

The Kerala High Court had granted him conditional bail in October last year but Bishop Franco is no longer head of the diocese.

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